at least someone gave me a rose today, so that’s okay

In the hopes of impressing my office enough to finally garner full employee status and get new health plan discounted glasses, I spent a significant amount of my holiday signed in to work remotely, meticulously going through everything I could think of, so all our files would be perfectly updated for the coming year, with no more clients slipping through the cracks or being misplaced due to spelling mistakes. (The number of people who sign up with commas for periods in their e-mail addresses is simply ridiculous). I signed in when I got up and again after dinner almost every day of the holiday, without fail. “Notice what a shiny, industrious little go getter you’ve got on your hands,” I hoped. “See how I’ve gone through the worst of our dreary lists with a fine tooth comb, straightening everything up!” Even through the weekend, it turns out, because who pays attention to what day it is when on holiday, when what I really wanted to be doing was deleriously playing out in the snow.

Guess what backfired.

I filed my hours today and got a letter back, “Can you account for these hours?” Bafflement turned to shock turned to hurt when the term “honor system” was mentioned. I immediately saw what the problem was: Holidays are for Days You Do Not Have To Pay Your Employees. Apparently we were only ever meant to check in, not actively seek out what else we could manage to do, so now not only did it turn out that I worked those weekends for free, my employers might be questioning my work ethic! I don’t know if there’s any office accusation as depressing. Bah. Argh. Hate. I’m not one of those flaky “my word is my bond” types, but damn do I hate being even slightly accused of being a liar. I still occasionally feel terrible about how I misremembered who was in a story about spilling coffee on William Gibson from when I was fifteen. That’s how much it galls me. Going back on Monday is not going to be fun.

I’m still glad about what I accomplished, but now, instead of being pleased to be back, I’m simply morose.

fricking frack: things I hate to miss more than

It’s that time of year again…

12th Annual Eastside Culture Crawl
November 21, 22, & 23

The 2008 Crawl map.

FRIDAY November 21st 5:00pm – 10:00pm
SATURDAY November 22nd 11:00am – 6:00pm
SUNDAY November 23rd 11:00am – 6:00pm

The Eastside Culture Crawl is a free, annual 3-day arts festival that involves artists opening their doors to let the public tramp through their creative studio-spaces, (and sometimes homes), to exhibit work for sale.

“Painters, jewelers, sculptors, furniture makers, musicians, weavers, potters, writers, printmakers, photographers, glassblowers; from emerging artists to those of international fame… these are just a sampling of the exciting talents featured during this unique chance to meet local artists in their studios.

Purchase something that strikes your fancy, commission something to be uniquely yours, or just browse through the studios and meet the artists, learning about their specific works of art, materials and tools, approaches and techniques. This is a once a year opportunity to meet many diversely talented artists and view their creations in the studios where they work. Be part of this exciting event, which brings people from all over the Lower Mainland, and share in the imaginations that enrich our neighbourhood and lives.”

Last year Dillon and I went to a bit of it, and it was absolutely spectacular. Almost endlessly fascinating, as every room contained an entirely new collection of art. 1000 Parker St., especially, as it has the highest concentration of artists. (Though there seems to be more paintings of crows at 1000 Parker St. than there are actual crows in a fifteen mile radius of the building itself. Go figure.) Thankfully few studios were devoted to watercolour trees or flowers, instead it was a little like coming home, exploring every room as new, colour-spattered, welcoming universe. Last year there were over 300 artists showing. This year there’s going to be more.

It’s one of the few Vancouver events I consider unmissable, which is why it’s killing me a little that I’m not going to be in town while it’s happening. Instead I’m going to be in Seattle, and then hopefully on a plane, making my way South, towards Lung and the Salton Sea, the ecological disaster desert west outside of L.A. Take pictures, everyone. Attend, discover, and explore.

my relationship with pink isn’t a friendly one

Behind the scenes of the As Real As It Gets… “sweded” photoshop advertising poster for

The raspberry red we bought from Home Depot dried a violent pink on the wall, the pink of a small girl’s pink velvet stirrup pants in the 80’s, even after seven coats. I swore upon seeing it the next morning, having forgotten overnight how appallingly bright it turned out. Gah. My eyes. Anyone’s eyes! Amazing what a bit of colour will do. Oi. Change the whole place, it does. Yes. Into a bad television set for brain damaged teenagers, all ironic and post-hateful and too cheerful for words.

I’m very glad we discovered this before we painted more than one space with it, though not so glad that we didn’t start with the spare room wall and not the kitchen. Small mercies duking it out with slightly bigger regrets. Who will win? News at eleven.

To rectify this horrible mistake, David and I spent part of our Remembrance Day with our heads bowed in the heavy crush of DIY sawdust yuppies at Home Depot. We had the paint retinted darker and bought a tiny tin of sinfully delicious red that we’re going to pour in before painting the next, more hopeful, coat. A final gasp for our currently blinding kitchen. Apparently Nicole is going to be over again today while I’m at work, hanging out with David who’s sick today, and painting. If that doesn’t work, I’m going to spraypaint it matte black, out of adorable girlish spite.